Laminating Tips

Laminating our products

Most of the components of our kits that you are likely to laminate will be light card — mostly 160 gsm card stock. Make sure your laminator is set for card of this thickness. If in doubt, trial a sheet of stock of similar weight first.

Two main things determine the outcome of effective laminating. Heat and paper/card thickness.

1. Heat — Higher heat settings melt the glue on the laminating film more quickly. If you are encountering a blotchy finish, the glue has probably not melted sufficiently, so more heat is required (or, a slower throughput of film will achieve the same thing). When blotchy, a sheet can sometimes be put through a pocket-type laminator a second time to achieve even melting of the glue.

2. Paper/card thickness — The heavier the paper/card, the more heat (or slower throughput) is required in order to melt the glue. If the stock is only 80 gsm paper (such as ordinary photocopying paper), use the coolest setting on the laminator. Regardless, paper stock that is this thin is difficult to laminate so that it remains flat. Too much heat usually leads to rather undesirable curving or waving of the sheet. Again, if the card is a heavy stock, too little heat will lead to a blotchy looking product. If unacceptably blotchy, a sheet can sometimes be 'recovered' by putting the sheet through a pocket-type laminator a second time.

 

Laminating edges

If you laminate a sheet of paper or stock, then trim the sheet in half, you will be left with pieces that have no 'laminate edge'. In other words, they will not be sealed at the edges, so moisture can get in and the laminating film may sometimes peal back. Therefore it is best to trim sheets to the desired size first, laminate them, then trim so as to leave a 2-4 mm edge of laminate around the sheet. This will seal and protect the sheet.

You can often save laminating film by passing several items — separated by 10 mm or more — in parallel through the laminator, then trim them afterwards.

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